1. Minnesota Farm Bureau sets priorities for 2019 legislative session (Voice of Agriculture)
- priorities include: financial and emotional challenges, rural communities, health care, taxes, trade, transportation, and food
2. With food inspectors furloughed, reduced FDA inspections 'put our food at risk' (WaPo)
- FDA oversees 80 percent of U.S. food supply
- Suspended all routine inspections of domestic food processing facilities
- CDC estimates 48 million people get sick from foodborne illness each year
- Inspectors look for unsanitary conditions, insect infestations, and contamination
3. USDA finds $5.1 billion to fund food stamps program through February (New Food Economy)
- Congress had approved funding through Jan. 20, but then USDA funding for SNAP (food stamps) would run out
- More than 40M Americans rely on food stamps
- USDA decision includes funding for Women, Infants, and Children program
4. School lunch debt increasing (New Food Economy)
- Students who can't afford to pay the full cost of lunch but don't qualify for reduced price or free lunch accrue debt that adds up quickly for school districts
- Effort has been made to ban "lunch shaming" which refers to practices that punished kids for carrying lunch debt. Sometimes by not feeding them.
- The total lunch debt in the United States isn't tracked
- I've never heard of lunch debt... is this a thing in Minnesota?
5. Meet the granary weevil, the pantry monster of our own creation (NPR)
- Well written story about an insect that has never been seen outside of "human food storage situations"
- language is playful yet specific; sparse in citations but well-sourced; includes history in a few short sentences
- Cause 2 to 5 percent of harvested grain waste in developing countries